18.12.2013

HOTELIERS UPBEAT FOR 2014 ACCORDING TO IHF INDUSTRY BAROMETER

Increase in Christmas Trade Providing Additional Boost to Irish Hotels Sector

 

  • 73% of hoteliers report an increase in business over last 12 months
  • 84% of hotels and guesthouses have positive outlook for 2014
  • Slight seasonal boost with increased business around Christmas

 

Wednesday, 18th December 2013: With 2013 drawing to a close, Irish hotels and guesthouses report an increase in business over the last 12 months largely on foot of The Gathering and strong levels of growth in overseas visitors – up over 7% on last year.

 

According to results of the Irish Hotels Federation’s (IHF) Quarterly Barometer, hoteliers are more upbeat compared to this time last year with 73% of respondents seeing an increase in overall business levels throughout the year (12% report no change, 15% report a decrease in business). Christmas trade is also up slightly with over half (56%) of hoteliers indicating that businesses have been more willing to hold Christmas events and celebrations compared to 2012.

 

Looking at the prospects for 2014, the vast majority of hotels and guesthouses (84%) say they have a positive outlook for the next 12 months - nearly double the number who had a positive outlook this time last year (46%). 

 

With pro-tourism initiatives from the Government continuing to provide a stimulus for the sector – and in excess of 15,000 new jobs created in accommodation and food services since July 2011 – almost half of respondents (48%) say they plan to take on additional staff in 2014.

 

Tim Fenn, Chief Executive of the IHF states: “The Gathering has proved an enormous success in attracting additional overseas visitors, particularly from North America which is up 15% this year. Many of these holidaymakers travelled around the country during their stay, delivering a boost to regional tourism and local economies. We have also benefited from growth in tourism visitors from continental Europe and the UK.”

 

“In terms of competitiveness, the Government’s decision to retain the 9% VAT rate will continue to help when marketing Ireland abroad as a tourism destination. This measure, combined with increased air access through the scrapping of the air travel tax, will enable us to attract a greater share of overseas visitors in 2014 and beyond,” says Mr Fenn. “This is directly feeding into increased confidence on the ground with over 62% of hoteliers planning to increase their investment in marketing next year.”

 

Commenting on the continued weakness in Irish consumer sentiment, Mr Fenn said: “Despite a welcome increase in Christmas trade, the domestic market remains a concern with business levels struggling throughout the year. Depressed consumer spending continues to put significant pressure on hotels outside of the larger urban areas and main holiday hotspots.”

 

Mr Fenn noted that business from the island of Ireland accounts for up 70 per cent of overall hotel demand nationally.

 

-ENDS-

 

FOR INFORMATION:

Eoin Quinn / Siobhan Molloy                       Dublin office: 01-679-8600

Weber Shandwick                                           Mobile: 087-233-2191 / 086-817-5066

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